MIDWEST COMPUTER GENEALOGISTS
_ NEWSLETTER _
Volume XXIV_August, 2020_Numbers
THE YEAR IS 2020
For several years, the “Ancestry Weekly Journal”
included articles about what was happening in many
years from the 18* Century to the 1960s, and we have
frequently used some of these articles in this
newsletter. American History is very important in our
family history research. As we study the lives of our
ancestors, we trace them from the original east coast
settlements, to the Revolution and the founding of our
country, and as many of them travel from coast to
coast to where we find ourselves in 2020.
2020 is a very important year in our history, and
August is a very significant month in our past and
present history. 2020 is the 75* anniversary of the end
of World War II, and VE Day, VJ Day, and the final
surrender of the Japanese in August, 1945 and the
signing of the document of surrender in September
marked major changes in the life of our country.
Many of us remember these months and that year, and
if we do not remember, we need to review these
THE PRESIDENT’S CORNER
My wife, Dorothy, and I grew up in Bates County,
Missouri, which borders Kansas. My parents, Albert
Frank and Mildred Catherine (Janssens) Morse, never
took the family on a vacation. One reason is that my
father worked 7 days a week for several years.
Dorothy's parents, Herbert Edgar and Dorothy
(McDaniel) Newcomb, never took a vacation either.
So we never visited other states, except Kansas on
rare occasions. When Dorothy and I got married on
August 18,1963, we honeymooned in Eureka Springs,
I taught school in Independence, so I had the summers
off. I did teach summer school on several occasions,
but, of course, they did not last all summer long. In
June of 1964, Dorothy and I drove to California for
our first vacation trip. We traveled Route 66, passing
through Oklahoma, Texas. New Mexico, Arizona, and
California. The road was a 2 lane highway till we got
near Eos Angeles.
On the way west, we stopped for a couple of days in
Flagstaff, Arizona. We went to the Grand Canyon and
drove through Oak Creek Canyon. We then went to
Torrance, California where we stayed with my
mother's brother, Carl and Edna (Woodward)
Janssens. When Uncle Carl and Aunt Edna and their
two daughters, Diane and Judy, came to visit the
family in Missouri, they always stayed at our house in
Rich Hill, Missouri. So they were happy to have us
stay with them, and we enjoyed visiting with their
We did the usual tourist things. We spent a day at a
beach and got sunburns. We visited Disneyland and
Knotfs Berry Farm. We drove through Hollywood.
We visited my cousin, Oliver Jack Morse, and his
family. Uncle Carl took us to a California Angels and
New York Yankees baseball game. Dorothy became
a fan of the Yankees' first baseman, Joe Pepitone. So
when we got home, we went to a Kansas City
Athletics and New York Yankees baseball game.
As we traveled home, we went to Santa Fe, New
Mexico and Denver, Colorado. We drove through the
Rocky Mountain National Park. We finally got back
to our apartment in Independence, Missouri. We were
exhausted, but we did really enjoy seeing the scenery,
the freeway system, and even the smog in Eos
In 1978, we made this same trip to California with our
sons, Brian and Steve. They were 10 and 7 at the time.
In fact, by staying in motels with swimming pools.
Brian learned to swim. Route 66 was now a four lane
freeway, Interstate 10, except for a section in either
New Mexico or Arizona. We went to the Grand
Canyon. We stayed at a motel in Anaheim, California.
We went to Disneyland, Knott's Berry Farm, and the
beach. We toured Hollywood on a guided bus tour,
which I really enjoyed because I could look at the
sights without having to look for traffic while driving.
The guide pointed out things that were interesting.
Uncle Carl and Aunt Edna were now living in
Williams, Arizona. We spent a night with them as we
were headed back to Missouri. They enjoyed seeing
In 1983, we went to Florida. The boys were now 15
and 12 and had their earplugs to their music as we
traveled. We went through Arkansas, Kentucky,
Tennessee, and Georgia to get to Florida. We spent
one night in Cocoa Beach. We visited the Kennedy
Space Center. In fact, while we were there, a launch
put Sally Ride into space. We then stayed in
Kissimmee for 5 nights. We went to Disney World
and Epcot Center. We had 3 day passes so we could
take our time each day and not hurry. We did some
other driving around. We then drove to Panama City,
Florida, Biloxi, Mississippi, and Memphis,
Tennessee. We, of course, visited Graceland, the
home of Elvis Presley. This thrilled Brian.
In other summers we would go to St. Fouis, Jefferson
City, Fake of the Ozarks, or even local one day trips
around Kansas City. We bought a tent and we did a
lot of camping. We went a couple of summers to
Branson, Missouri and stayed at Yogi Bear's
Jellystone Park. We went to Silver Dollar City, saw
some live music shows, and drove around to see the
sights. We did purchase a membership to Fake
Paradise, near Oak Grove, Missouri, about 25 miles
from our house. Fake Paradise had 4 or 5 small lakes.
We camped on Sunset Fake several times. We walked
to another lake that had a nice sand beach for the
swimming in the lake. We would go out there 2 or 3
or 4 times a year for the weekend.
After Brian went to Christian Theological Seminary
in Indianapolis, Indiana, Dorothy and I traveled there
a couple of times a year. We enjoyed driving around
with Brian and seeing the sights. On the way home,
Dorothy and I would travel around some of the
smaller towns. Dorothy would always buy a new
cookbook or two and read recipes to me as we
traveled. When Brian became the minister at the First
Christian Church in Earlington, Kentucky, we then
traveled there a couple of times a year.
So we got to see much of the country. We know that
the boys also enjoyed the trips, whether big or small.
We had many cherished memories from them.
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has an opportunity to be included in these records.
U.S. CENSUS AND ELECTIONS
The year 2020 is remembered for many different
events, as we have seen in the article about 1945 and
the 100 anniversary of the 19* Amendment in
previous articles. Most women were able to vote
following several decades of struggle by the women
who led the movement, but some were still challenged
and did not receive the benefit of this amendment
until many years later. After the end of World War II
in 1945, there were many changes in our lives. There
were more jobs and relative prosperity following the
war than in the preceding decade.
The U.S. Census is very important for all of us as
family historians. We trace our ancestors back from
the latest census in which we can find them decade by
decade. Although we can find our female ancestors in
earlier census records, their maiden names are not
included, and this presents many challenges as we try
to trace the family lines of these ancestors. Marriage
records are not always easy to find. In addition, the
U.S. Census records before 1850 only include the
names of the heads of house. The immediately
preceding decades give information about males and
females and some information about ages. The earliest
Census records group the genders together, and it is
difficult to identify those who were not heads of house
unless we are able to find marriage, church, or will
records that identify those who are grouped together.
Census records are very important for other reasons
than tracing our ancestors. The number of U.S.
Representatives in each state are determined from the
previous Census, and some federal funds are
distributed to the states according to the reported
populations. 2020 has presented some additional
challenges for the U.S. Census. Many of us were able
to register for the Census online, and the spelling and
writing errors that we have found in some earlier
Census records should not be present.However, the
pandemic presents some significant problems for
those who could not or did not complete their Census
forms online. We would like to think that everyone
From 1850 to the beginning of this century, the
information provided in the Census increased. In
1850, the names of all people residing in a household
are given for the first time. The 1880 Census provides
the birthplace of parents of the people including,
helping us trace them back to places from which they
emigrated. In 1900, we are able to see how many
children a woman had had and how many of them
were living at that time.
This is the 60* anniversary of the election of the first
Catholic President, John F. Kennedy. I cast my first
vote in that election and have voted in 14 Presidential
elections since that time. I have voted in two states,
Missouri and Illinois.
I have been listed in 9 U.S. Census records, but I have
not found myself in any of these records yet. We have
not been able to find my family in the 1940 Census,
and the 1950 Census will not be published until 2022,
72 years after this Census was taken. I have lived in
Oklahoma, two cities in Kansas, five cities in
Missouri, one city each in Florida, Ohio, and Illinois.
We have much better records now because of
technology, but if I had lived 100 years before, I
would have been extremely difficult for future
generations to find me.
In I960, I was a student at Florida State University,
and the Census taker insisted that I provide my
Census records there. I told him I was a student, and
my permanent voting residence was still at my
parents’ home in Missouri, but he insisted that I had
to provide my information in Florida. Of course, I
could not vote in Florida, but I counted for that decade
in their records. My father was reported in the 1930
Census by his mother in Oklahoma and by his
grandmother, with whom he lived then, in Asbury,
Missouri, also being counted in two states..
A1 Morse, President
Byron Gilbreath, Treasurer
Marjorie Slavens , Newsletter Editor
Julia Morse, Website Administrator, Digital Librarian